Stress can wreak havoc on a teenager’s or even an adults’ sleep cycle. Nowadays, only a few people get the hours of sleep ideal for their age, but several medical experts agree that teenagers are likely to fall shorter than anyone else.
If you notice that your son or daughter has a hard time sleeping, here are some things you can do to help them get more rest naturally.
Do Relaxing Activities Before Sleeping
Doing relaxing activities at least an hour before lights out, such as taking a hot water bath, can help your teen sleep better. That’s because the hot water changes your body’s core temperature, and when you go to bed, it drops down, signaling your body that it’s time to sleep. So, ensure you have your water heater repaired and maintained regularly to help your teen have relaxing baths to improve their sleep.
Ban Them from Using Gadgets in Their Bedroom
Not being able to stay off their gadgets are the most common reason why teens experience sleep troubles. Experts believe it’s because they get exposed to light from the devices’ screen, disrupting the traditional cues sent to the brain to sleep. So, before bedtime, take their gadgets away.
Create a Sleeping Schedule and Help Them Stick to It
Doing a sleep schedule within an hour of what time they usually sleep can keep their circadian rhythm (sleep-wake cycle) in check. Sleeping in hours later than their regular sleeping schedules on the weekend or school breaks makes it harder for them to stick to the ideal circadian rhythm, helping them stick to it to ensure better sleep long-term.
Discourage Afternoon Naps
Although napping during the afternoon provides more sleep, it’s only short-term, making it harder for a person to sleep at night. Plus, they break up sleep, meaning your teen may experience a lower quality of sleep and lesser benefits. If you notice your teen napping during the afternoon, help them quit to get a good night’s rest. You can do this by providing distractions for them during lazy afternoons, such as playing games or going for a walk at the park.
Give Them High-Carb Snacks
Dietitians and physicians suggest eating high-carb snacks before going to bed can naturally help teens get into a deep slumber. That’s because these make your body warmer, leading to sleepiness. Try letting your teen munch on some pretzels, cereal, fruit, or popcorn before bedtime.
Provide Melatonin Supplements
A hormone named ‘melatonin’ that signals the brain to sleep is secreted later in the evening for teens, meaning they get tired later than most people. Natural supplements for this are over-the-counter and can help your teen’s body reset its internal clock, helping them sleep better and at the right time. It’s best to give them the supplements an hour before bedtime. However, it’s wise not to be dependent on this supplement as it can cause side effects like a ‘medication hangover.’
Consult a Healthcare Professional
Sometimes, if your teen is having difficulty sleeping, that may be due to an underlying medical issue, like depression or sleep apnea. If your child is having trouble falling asleep or wakes up several times during the night, seek medical attention immediately.
Teenagers are at a critical phase of their growth and development. Because of this, they require more sleep than grown adults. Experts recommend teens to get a minimum of eight to nine hours of sleep. The tips mentioned can help you ensure your teen is getting enough slumber to stay healthy and perform well at school.